On 24 January Russia-backed terrorists continued the bloody series of terrorist attacks in Ukraine. As a result of the shelling of residential areas in Mariupol, in eastern Ukraine, more than 30 civilians have been killed and more than 100 wounded. As the President of Ukraine stated – “Bloody murder of dozens of civilians and wounding nearly a hundred of people by pro-Russian terrorists in Mariupol is not only a terrorist attack. It is a crime against humanity that is the issue to be considered by the Hague Tribunal”.
According to the OSCE SMM Spot Report of 24 January, the bombardment was carried out using multiple Grad and Uragan rockets launched from inside terrorist-controlled territory.
I would like to quote this Report:
“According to the impact analysis, the Grad rockets originated from a north-easterly direction, the area of Oktyabr (19km north-east of Olimpiiska Street), and the Uragan rockets from an easterly direction, the area of Zaichenko (15km east of Olimpiiska Street), both controlled by so called “Donetsk People’s Republic” (“DNR”).”
Let me remind you that shelling took place after statements by one of the terrorist leaders about imminent attacks on Ukrainian cities, as well as a significant intensification of inflows of Russian armed forces and weapons into the Donetsk and Luhansk regions.
As was stated by the self-proclaimed leader of the so-called "DNR" Zakharchenko: “Today we launched an offensive against Mariupol. This will be the best monument to all our dead”. Thus, Zakharchenko admitted that the attack on the city is the handiwork of his "soldiers". Other self-proclaimed leaders also announced the beginning of a “decisive phase of the offensive”. They said that their troops took control over towns of Krasniy Partisan, Verhnetroitske and Peski. But in a few hours when the information about civilians killed was received the terrorists denied their own words and actions.
Let me remind you that the same tactics the terrorists used after shooting down the passenger plane MH17 and shelling of the passenger bus in Volnovakha. At first they cheered themselves as they thought they destroyed Ukrainian military airplane or block post. But after they realized they killed civilians the terrorists started to blame Ukrainian Army.
I would like to reiterate, should militants and Russia have complied with the Minsk agreements, these dreadful tragedies would not have happened.
The Russian Federation, which continues to support terrorist activities and whose troops are directly involved in hostilities against Ukraine, is solely responsible for all these murders of innocent civilians.
We seek international support that Russia will finally be compelled to keep its promises, rein in its proxies and stop sending troops and weaponry into Ukraine. We demand that Russia fully implement the Minsk agreements which it has thus far supported only in words, including the immediate withdrawal of all its armed forces from the territory of Ukraine, stabilization of the Ukrainian-Russian border and the establishment of international monitoring. It should also free without any further delay Ukrainian Pilot Nadia Savchenko, who is still on hunger strike endangering her life, Sentsov, Kolchenko and other Ukrainian citizens illegally held in Russia.
Unfortunately the Russian side failed to answer the questions we asked them during the latest meetings of the UN Security Council, they failed to explain what
12 000 Russian military servicemen, 235 tanks, 720 armed military vehicles,
263 artillery systems were doing in Ukraine.
Let me say a few words on the recent developments on humanitarian assistance to Donbas.
We are receiving the latest reports on the situation in Donetsk and Luhansk regions; in particular yesterday construction crews have resumed electricity, gas and water supply to a number of towns in Luhansk region, including heating.
The Government continues to provide the around-the clock monitoring of the operation of life support systems of settlements suffering from attacks of militants.
President Poroshenko has held a meeting with European Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management where the issues of assistance to the people affected by the actions of terrorists in the East of Ukraine were discussed.
President has emphasized that "the actions of Russian-backed terrorists and regular Russian troops in the Donbas have led to extensive destruction and both physical and moral suffering of Ukrainians. Hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians in the ATO area need humanitarian assistance.
The true one, not pseudo-assistance consisting of fuel for tanks and weapons for terrorists that the aggressor is going to send to the Donbas for the twelfth time already".
On 27 January 2015 the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine adopted the Resolution “On the Statement of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine to the United Nations, European Parliament, Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, NATO Parliamentary Assembly, GUAM Parliamentary Assembly and international parliaments on recognizing the Russian Federation the aggressor state”. In its statement the Ukrainian Parliament condemned the illegal actions of the Russian Federation in Ukraine and called on the international community to recognize the aggression of the Russian Federation against Ukraine, the occupation of Ukraine’s territory and strengthen the requirements to return to the internationally recognized borders of Ukraine.
We also call on the international community to respond resolutely to the crimes of terrorists, increase all forms of pressure on those who sponsor and support them. Our position remains constant – the so-called “DNR” and “LNR” must be recognized as terrorist organizations.
We are grateful to all the international organizations and states that provided us with their strong support.
We express gratitude for the UN Secretary-General’s clear and unambiguous statement denouncing unilateral withdrawal from the cease-fire by so-called rebel leadership, and particularly their provocative statements about claiming further territory. We are also grateful to Mr. Ban Ki-moon for his prompt and strong condemnation of the rocket attack indiscriminately launched into civilian areas, which, according to the Secretary-General, would constitute a violation of international humanitarian law. We appreciate the humanitarian assistance of the UN.
We are grateful to Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe for supporting Ukraine, in particular for its decision on Nadiya Savchenko and for the limitation of the mandate of the Russian delegation to the PACE.
We express gratitude to the European Union for their constant support and for the yesterday’s decision to extend the restrictive measures for undermining Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.
We are grateful to the OSCE for their work and efforts to achieve a sustainable ceasefire in Donbas.
As you could see the whole democratic world is on our Side. And together we will do everything to stop the pain and suffering, to return peace to each Ukrainian family – from Lviv to Luhansk, from Chernihiv to Kerch.
Having united our efforts, we will defend our freedom!”
In this struggle for Ukraine, for Europe and, ultimately, for the UN Charter we count on the UN solidarity and actions.